Friday, July 06, 2007

"Furry" : some comments

no... the blog hasn't died. I just have some... "personal" problems with using this blog as a platform to "beg" or post angsty stuff... I also have had little to talk about outside of Intel, AMD, and Microsoft. Not exactly topics that I really want to repeat "over and over and over and over"

so... this topic is about "Furry." So why today? Why now? Because AnthroCon is going on up in Pittsburgh PA. So what exactly is "Furry" anyways? Well, in some aspects, there isn't anything to distinguish "Furry" from "Trekkies" or "Warsies." (Star Trek / Star Wars) Like other so called fandoms, their are different levels of involvement with each... well, I am going to use the term of culture.

Take Star Trek as example. At which point does a person go from simply liking William Shatner as Captain Kirk... to being a "trekkie?" On Star Wars, at which point does somebody who knows that Han Shot First become a "warsie?"

With both of those Sci-Fi shows there are tons of people who are fans of Star Wars that will never be found making their own Storm Trooper suit. A lot of young boys who dreamed of being Luke Skywalker don't go out and make their own authentic replica of his uniforms. Many a fan of Captain Picard will never consider shaving their head and command their number #1 to open a communication channel.

The furry culture is much the same way in segmentation. A lot of furries would never dream of making a fur suit and dancing at a convention. Many are content to simply watch Chuck Jones Loony Toons and get autographed copies of Pogo books.

However, the Furries have the same major problem that other fandoms have... well behaved normal people don't make good news blurbs. People who take the culture to it's furthest reaches are the ones who make the news blurbs. Just as Warsies have to put up with people decked out in full jedi gear dueling with lightsabres out in the middle of mall parking lots, or Trekkies have to deal with people who dress up in a full federation uniform and shop in Kroger... Furries have those who do get their kicks out of snuggling while dressed up like an animal.


so... why am I blogging about this? Well, technically, I AM a furry. I roleplay as a cat. My avatar is a blue kitten. I've used the name Neko Neko Saist before (still do in some places). I got giddy as a schoolgirl when Carolyn Kelly signed Pogo books that her father wrote. I will admit that I picked up a blue belled collar just for the kicks of it...

so... it... is rather... upsetting... when it's realized that the Furry fandom also has people like 2 the ranting gryphon. One of the major advantages of Furry Fandom is that it isn't tied to any political party, any religion, or ... well... anything else. The culture includes people who like Star Trek, Star Wars, Harry Potter, Hot Wheels, Transformers, and so on. At a furry con you'll see professional mascots keeping 10 year olds busy while Mom and Dad enjoy watching Bugs Bunny...

Most other conventions have tons of protestors with sometimes legitimate complaints about the convention. Furry Cons? They get protesters from 4chan's /b board, ebaumsworld, and something awful. Yes... groups that are known for actively trolling everything, people who get their kicks out of causing trouble...

To put this in perspective, it is a general consensus amongst attendee's at furry cons to allow only official representatives of the convention to speak with media personal. It isn't anything official, but many furries are aware of the news driven perception that they are... errored... in some format.

So... the last thing furries need right now is for any well known member to make a major misstep... especially during one of the largest international conventions for this culture.

... so... when 2 the Ranting Gryphon steps up on stage, obviously drunk, and having the con chairman admit earlier that 2 was so drunk that he was purging the contents of his stomach... and opens his performance joking about Jerry Falwell having died...

now... from my perspective, 2 is a technically brilliant comedian. Even when drunk he had excellent sense of timing of when to drop a joke, and the right physical actions to perform alongside the joke. ... Also, admittedly... 2 fired shots at everybody during the performance...

but telling jokes about Jerry Falwell dying is about as about as tacky as joking about Mother Teresa dying. I don't really care what was thought of their personal politics or personal religious stances... Jerry Falwell has done a lot of work in charity and in higher education (colleges) making sure that even low-grade averages could continue their education.

So... when the morning comes... one of the stories that I fear I will see on the morning paper is "Furry Convention slanders Dead Pastor."

yeah... that's all we needed. Thanks 2. Thanks a lot. Way to make all furries look bad because of a personal vendetta.

I realize that like Michael Savage, Randy Milholland, and Howard Stern, that 2's job is built around grating people the wrong way... 2 is very well compensated for being a flamboyant homosexual who ticks people off. For that reason I can just simply write off his jokes as just that... jokes. I may not like them... but then again, I didn't find the joke that was the original Xbox (or Halo) very funny either.

However, when the local, national, and international press is camped out in the hotel lobby just looking for a story that will paint furries in a very bad light... 2 hands it to them on a silver platter.

What I hope... is that this blog post will be the only story on his performance... I really do... I hope that his performance doens't go beyond the convention center walls... but if they do... it's going to make saying I am a furry a lot harder.